Reel Lives: Elliott Rapaport of Birches Health

Reel Lives: Elliott Rapaport of Birches Health

Reel Lives: Elliott Rapaport of Birches Health

July 11, 2024

July 11, 2024

July 11, 2024

Birches Health founder & CEO Elliott Rapaport spoke with Brett Smiley of Casino Reports in the latest edition of their "Reel Lives" content series. The interview covered a great range of topics, from important societal issues to light-hearted personal preferences. Thank you to Brett for the great conversation - we hope you all enjoy the piece.

Notable excerpts from full article:

Every gambler has a story to tell. And so does every person who chooses to make a living in this unique industry. In our “Reel Lives” series, Casino Reports shines a spotlight on people working in the gaming business, from executives, to analysts, to media members and communications pros, and all points in between.

The subject in this interview: Elliott Rapaport, founder of Birches Health, a New York-based gambling addiction teletherapy provider that’s partnered with sports betting exchange Sporttrade and is on a mission to make counseling for gambling addiction more accessible.

Casino Reports (CR): So what prompted you to start the company?

Elliott Rapaport (ER): A friend struggling with their gambling made me realize that there was not a high-quality clinical provider for virtual gambling addiction treatment covered by insurance. Given my experience in healthcare operations, I had a vision of building a company that offers best-in-class problem gambling teletherapy treatment. We have since expanded the digital platform to provide resources, educational materials, and responsible gaming learning modules and tools in hopes that they can help counter the growing amount of individuals who end up needing treatment for their gambling addiction.

CR: To what extent do you think persons deemed “VIP” clients are at greater risk (or not) for developing a gambling disorder? 

ER: Some of these clients may be statistically likely to be long-term losers to a significant degree. In terms of the potential for developing a gambling disorder, it likely varies widely depending on the mental and financial health of the client. For some, losing hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars could be the equivalent of the average American losing $20. However, incentives given to these players may prompt them to engage in at-risk behaviors. Irresponsible betting behaviors are dangerous and could certainly lead to serious problems such as a gambling disorder. 

CR:  What percentage of the Birches clientele present with each of these as the primary issue/possible addiction: gambling (unspecified), sports betting, day trading, crypto, video gaming, pornography, substance abuse, other?

ER: Our clinical team has decades of experience building gambling disorder treatment and training programs nationally. As a result, our program is laser focused on working with individuals struggling with gambling and gaming disorder nationally. While gambling disorder may be the majority of our patient population, due to the significant incidence of co-occurring disorders, our clinical specialties extend across the gambling, gaming, compulsive sexual behaviors, substance use disorder, and more. The fastest growing segment of our patient population is without a doubt sports betting. And indeed, a strong clinical concentration has been on the 21-to-40-year-old sports betting demographic.

CR: What are you hearing from Birches clients/patients about what is particularly triggering — with respect to problem gambling — within regulated platforms in the post-PASPA era? Put another way, what do you think sports betting operators or iGaming operators can be doing better? 

ER: Increasing awareness of specialized resources and treatment like Birches Health is crucial to making sure that regulated platforms are a central component of a healthy ecosystem. With the now widespread access to iGaming and sports betting, we all play a part in ensuring gambling harms are reduced.

Reel Fast

What’s your favorite national restaurant chain? 

Zaxby’s

Most expensive item you encountered in person at Sotheby’s?

Leonardo Da Vinci’s Salvator Mundi

Favorite airport?

JFK!

Most played artist on your streaming platform of choice this year? 

Bruce Springsteen

How many hours a night do you usually sleep?

Not enough

Best live concert/performance you’ve ever seen? 

Bruce Springsteen

Favorite Summer Olympics sport to watch besides water polo?

200m races


You can find Elliott on LinkedIn here and also somewhere in the swamps of Jersey, probably.

Birches Health founder & CEO Elliott Rapaport spoke with Brett Smiley of Casino Reports in the latest edition of their "Reel Lives" content series. The interview covered a great range of topics, from important societal issues to light-hearted personal preferences. Thank you to Brett for the great conversation - we hope you all enjoy the piece.

Notable excerpts from full article:

Every gambler has a story to tell. And so does every person who chooses to make a living in this unique industry. In our “Reel Lives” series, Casino Reports shines a spotlight on people working in the gaming business, from executives, to analysts, to media members and communications pros, and all points in between.

The subject in this interview: Elliott Rapaport, founder of Birches Health, a New York-based gambling addiction teletherapy provider that’s partnered with sports betting exchange Sporttrade and is on a mission to make counseling for gambling addiction more accessible.

Casino Reports (CR): So what prompted you to start the company?

Elliott Rapaport (ER): A friend struggling with their gambling made me realize that there was not a high-quality clinical provider for virtual gambling addiction treatment covered by insurance. Given my experience in healthcare operations, I had a vision of building a company that offers best-in-class problem gambling teletherapy treatment. We have since expanded the digital platform to provide resources, educational materials, and responsible gaming learning modules and tools in hopes that they can help counter the growing amount of individuals who end up needing treatment for their gambling addiction.

CR: To what extent do you think persons deemed “VIP” clients are at greater risk (or not) for developing a gambling disorder? 

ER: Some of these clients may be statistically likely to be long-term losers to a significant degree. In terms of the potential for developing a gambling disorder, it likely varies widely depending on the mental and financial health of the client. For some, losing hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars could be the equivalent of the average American losing $20. However, incentives given to these players may prompt them to engage in at-risk behaviors. Irresponsible betting behaviors are dangerous and could certainly lead to serious problems such as a gambling disorder. 

CR:  What percentage of the Birches clientele present with each of these as the primary issue/possible addiction: gambling (unspecified), sports betting, day trading, crypto, video gaming, pornography, substance abuse, other?

ER: Our clinical team has decades of experience building gambling disorder treatment and training programs nationally. As a result, our program is laser focused on working with individuals struggling with gambling and gaming disorder nationally. While gambling disorder may be the majority of our patient population, due to the significant incidence of co-occurring disorders, our clinical specialties extend across the gambling, gaming, compulsive sexual behaviors, substance use disorder, and more. The fastest growing segment of our patient population is without a doubt sports betting. And indeed, a strong clinical concentration has been on the 21-to-40-year-old sports betting demographic.

CR: What are you hearing from Birches clients/patients about what is particularly triggering — with respect to problem gambling — within regulated platforms in the post-PASPA era? Put another way, what do you think sports betting operators or iGaming operators can be doing better? 

ER: Increasing awareness of specialized resources and treatment like Birches Health is crucial to making sure that regulated platforms are a central component of a healthy ecosystem. With the now widespread access to iGaming and sports betting, we all play a part in ensuring gambling harms are reduced.

Reel Fast

What’s your favorite national restaurant chain? 

Zaxby’s

Most expensive item you encountered in person at Sotheby’s?

Leonardo Da Vinci’s Salvator Mundi

Favorite airport?

JFK!

Most played artist on your streaming platform of choice this year? 

Bruce Springsteen

How many hours a night do you usually sleep?

Not enough

Best live concert/performance you’ve ever seen? 

Bruce Springsteen

Favorite Summer Olympics sport to watch besides water polo?

200m races


You can find Elliott on LinkedIn here and also somewhere in the swamps of Jersey, probably.

Birches Health founder & CEO Elliott Rapaport spoke with Brett Smiley of Casino Reports in the latest edition of their "Reel Lives" content series. The interview covered a great range of topics, from important societal issues to light-hearted personal preferences. Thank you to Brett for the great conversation - we hope you all enjoy the piece.

Notable excerpts from full article:

Every gambler has a story to tell. And so does every person who chooses to make a living in this unique industry. In our “Reel Lives” series, Casino Reports shines a spotlight on people working in the gaming business, from executives, to analysts, to media members and communications pros, and all points in between.

The subject in this interview: Elliott Rapaport, founder of Birches Health, a New York-based gambling addiction teletherapy provider that’s partnered with sports betting exchange Sporttrade and is on a mission to make counseling for gambling addiction more accessible.

Casino Reports (CR): So what prompted you to start the company?

Elliott Rapaport (ER): A friend struggling with their gambling made me realize that there was not a high-quality clinical provider for virtual gambling addiction treatment covered by insurance. Given my experience in healthcare operations, I had a vision of building a company that offers best-in-class problem gambling teletherapy treatment. We have since expanded the digital platform to provide resources, educational materials, and responsible gaming learning modules and tools in hopes that they can help counter the growing amount of individuals who end up needing treatment for their gambling addiction.

CR: To what extent do you think persons deemed “VIP” clients are at greater risk (or not) for developing a gambling disorder? 

ER: Some of these clients may be statistically likely to be long-term losers to a significant degree. In terms of the potential for developing a gambling disorder, it likely varies widely depending on the mental and financial health of the client. For some, losing hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars could be the equivalent of the average American losing $20. However, incentives given to these players may prompt them to engage in at-risk behaviors. Irresponsible betting behaviors are dangerous and could certainly lead to serious problems such as a gambling disorder. 

CR:  What percentage of the Birches clientele present with each of these as the primary issue/possible addiction: gambling (unspecified), sports betting, day trading, crypto, video gaming, pornography, substance abuse, other?

ER: Our clinical team has decades of experience building gambling disorder treatment and training programs nationally. As a result, our program is laser focused on working with individuals struggling with gambling and gaming disorder nationally. While gambling disorder may be the majority of our patient population, due to the significant incidence of co-occurring disorders, our clinical specialties extend across the gambling, gaming, compulsive sexual behaviors, substance use disorder, and more. The fastest growing segment of our patient population is without a doubt sports betting. And indeed, a strong clinical concentration has been on the 21-to-40-year-old sports betting demographic.

CR: What are you hearing from Birches clients/patients about what is particularly triggering — with respect to problem gambling — within regulated platforms in the post-PASPA era? Put another way, what do you think sports betting operators or iGaming operators can be doing better? 

ER: Increasing awareness of specialized resources and treatment like Birches Health is crucial to making sure that regulated platforms are a central component of a healthy ecosystem. With the now widespread access to iGaming and sports betting, we all play a part in ensuring gambling harms are reduced.

Reel Fast

What’s your favorite national restaurant chain? 

Zaxby’s

Most expensive item you encountered in person at Sotheby’s?

Leonardo Da Vinci’s Salvator Mundi

Favorite airport?

JFK!

Most played artist on your streaming platform of choice this year? 

Bruce Springsteen

How many hours a night do you usually sleep?

Not enough

Best live concert/performance you’ve ever seen? 

Bruce Springsteen

Favorite Summer Olympics sport to watch besides water polo?

200m races


You can find Elliott on LinkedIn here and also somewhere in the swamps of Jersey, probably.